Last week, the Missouri Department of Transportation was focused on clearing the state’s roadways of snow and ice. And before the week was up, crews began working to repair potholes.
The department’s state maintenance director, Natalie Roark, said in a news release that the freezing temperatures combined with the snow and ice this month have caused lots of potholes to form on Missouri’s highways. Crews are working as hard as they can to fill potholes. She asked motorists to be patient.
About 300 pothole patching crews are working statewide, according to MODOT, and it’s not a cheap fix. In 2020, MODOT patched around 760,000 potholes at a cost of $18 million.
MODOT said potholes are the sign of an aging transportation system, but roads that would benefit from resurfacing can only be patched due to limited resources. MODOT officials pointed out that the state’s budget for road repairs is largely financed by a 17-cent per gallon gas tax that’s remained the same since 1996.
The department said motorists should avoid puddles that could hide a pothole and make sure your tires are properly inflated. If you can’t avoid a pothole, hold the steering wheel firmly to avoid losing control, and don’t brake directly over a pothole because that can cause more damage.
To report a pothole on state-maintained roads, call 1-888-ASK-MODOT or go to modot.org. Potholes on city streets should be reported to local city or county maintenance.
In Springfield, click here to report a pothole.